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Worth upgrading Athlon II x3 450 to i3 2120

  • CPUs
  • Dual Core
Last response: in CPUs
June 20, 2012 9:33:58 AM

I'm on a tight budget but wanting to change platform. I've read very good things abuot the i3 and even though its dual core vs the triple core, from what I've read it is still better. What I can't quantify is by how much?

They system will be general PC duties with moderate gaming.

More about : worth upgrading athlon 450 2120

a b à CPUs
June 20, 2012 9:59:38 AM

why would you not just put a phenom in there?

What gpu are you using btw?
a c 84 à CPUs
June 20, 2012 10:02:51 AM

depends on what you want to do with a core i3.
without knowing your pc specs it's hard to say. need your full pc specs including psu specs. it'll help others point out which needs changing.
the core i3 will have 2 real cores as opposed to athlon ii's 3 (4 is core unlocking and oc is successful) cores. core i3 will play games better than athlon with a powerful gaming gfx card. you can try checking out these benches:
the following is based on some assumptions.
however, if your motherboard's chipset supports new am3+ cpus, you can update your mobo bios and go for piledriver cpus coming out later this year. if your platform supports pd, you can get away with a decent cpu (still lower gaming perf than intel's) without changing your motherboard and putting the saved money towards a gaming gfx card and/or ssd.
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June 20, 2012 10:08:09 AM

I've considered it but they seem to hold their value (quite rightly) well on eBay. I live in the UK and I can get the i3 for about £20 more.

I tend to spend smaller amounts on more frequent upgrades than largers amounts on upgrades that will last longer.

With that inmind. Even if I did get a Phenom, my next upgrade from there would be a new platform since I'd have taken my current motherboard as far as it can go with the Phenom.

I was thinking if I change now, there is room for an upgrade in future.

I have a HD 4890 in that machine.

Thanks for your help.
June 20, 2012 10:12:39 AM

Ok here is the info.

Corsair HX 520 PSU

4GB Corsair XMS2 PC6400

I've checked motherboard and piledriver is no go. Max it supports is phenom 955 and one or two of the 6 cores chips.

There's a M4 128GB SSD along with a 500gb Hard drive.
June 20, 2012 10:19:19 AM

Oh and I did try unlocking the 4th core when I purchased the X3 but it failed.

Usage, is general PC. web stuff, e-mail, office suite, downloads, itunes, movies, I do the odd youTube vid so use basic video editing. I sometimes convert stuff from one format to another using any video converter. Also unpack a fair amount of rars.

Game when I have time.
a c 84 à CPUs
June 20, 2012 10:29:20 AM

from intel, pentium g860 or core i3 2120 would be a decent choice, with a radeon hd 6870 or 7850 - depending on budget.
imo both avc and file extraction could benefit from cpus from more cores. gaming typically uses 2 cpus cores and that's why pentium and core i3's gaming perf bests amd's cpus.
a b à CPUs
June 20, 2012 10:36:46 AM

What's the graphics card model you're currently using, and what's your monitor's resolution?
June 20, 2012 10:44:19 AM

Graphics is a Sapphire Radeon HD 4890 1GB, runs on a 1920 x 1080 monitor.
a b à CPUs
June 20, 2012 11:09:38 AM

You can check this review, watch the difference in performance between these 2 platforms and a mid-range gpu:

Keep in mind that your graphics card is between 6770 and 6850 in terms of performance, and your cpu might be around 10-30 percent slower than these two when it comes to gaming.

If you're on a budget and play here and there, I really don't think you should upgrade right now. If you want to squeeze a little more performance then get a ~40$ (maybe even less) aftermarket cooling for your cpu and overclock it a little.